The Princeton Elementary School Melody Makers performed in front of crowds from around the world at the 27th annual America Sings Festival in Washington, D.C.
The group, made up of fifth-graders, performed under the direction of Princeton Elementary music teacher Hollie Heller.
John Jacobson founded America Sings to promote music, community service and hope in a choral festival. The festival’s motto is “bringing the joy of music to kids who feel they have no hope, from kids with hope to share.”
Students from across the United States prepared four pieces for a mass performance. Princeton’s Jillian Malham performed a vocal solo in “One Small Voice,” and Brittney Sisson performed sign language to “One Small Voice.”
“Singing in front of all of those people made me feel like I was being an inspiration to others,” Malham said. “It was a very moving moment for me to sing on the Lincoln Memorial step.”
In addition to their performance in the America Sings Festival, the Melody Makers performed their own program on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. The students dedicated the program, titled “Super Kids Fighting for a Cure,” to their late classmate, Xander Pond.
While in Washington, the Melody Makers visited several memorials, monuments and museums.
The students also took part in a community service project. Princeton Elementary School collected peanut butter and jelly. The students who traveled to Washington then made sandwiches for the D.C. Central Kitchen to distribute to the homeless and less fortunate. The remaining peanut butter and jelly went to the Capital Area Community Food Bank.
The students also helped put together “Kits for Kids,” distributed by the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project.
“I am so very proud of our students,” said Princeton Elementary Principal Rhonda Ward. “Not only for how well they performed by also for their awesome behavior while on this trip. They represented Princeton Elementary in regular Bulldog fashion. I would also like to thank Mrs. Hollie Heller and all the parents on a job well done.”